Barr Kicks Off the Next Big Fight Over Immigration: Reason Roundup
Plus: Trump shows true colors on Yemen, U.K. sets a date for new porn rules, and scientists say we may be in a new geological epoch.
Seemingly never satisfied that life is miserable for people seeking asylum here, the Trump administration has suggested mandatory and indefinite detention for those awaiting an outcome on their case. On Tuesday, Attorney General William Barr opined on an immigration case, saying:
An alien who is transferred from expedited removal proceedings to full removal proceedings after establishing a credible fear of persecution or torture is ineligible for release on bond. Such an alien must be detained until his removal proceedings conclude, unless he is granted parole.
Wait times for those seeking hearings has been climbing, from a matter of months to as long as a year.
"Our Constitution does not allow the government to lock up asylum seekers without basic due process," the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) tweeted in response.
We'll see the administration in court. Again.
Sarah Pierce of the Migration Policy Institute commented that "there are 3 big groups effectively exempted from this decision: 1. Unaccompanied children 2. Families 3. Everyone ICE doesn't have the resources to include. The first two are especially relevant right now, considering the current crisis is driven by rising numbers of families and children."
So the 1st story from tonight's news is definitely that the AG's decision could lead to more & longer detention of asylum seekers.
BUT the 2nd story is the absolutely unprecedented ways this admin is using the AG's referral & review power to advance its immigration agenda…
— Sarah Pierce (@SarahPierceEsq) April 17, 2019
Barr's ruling "reversed an immigration judge's decision to release an immigrant on bond while waiting for his proceedings," notes NBC. "He also said that the Board of Immigration Appeals, a panel that reviews immigration court decisions, 'wrongly decided' that only immigrants who enter the U.S. through legal ports of entry should be detained while others could be released on bond."
"So much for the anti-war president." On Tuesday, President Donald Trump vetoed a resolution passed by the U.S. House and Senate declaring that America would no longer support Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen. "Since taking office, Trump's track record has been decidedly mixed," notes Reason's Eric Boehm.
But on Tuesday night, Trump unambiguously backed Forever War. He vetoed a congressional resolution that would have ended American military involvement in the Yemeni civil war—a conflict that has killed an estimated 50,000 people (scores more have died in a famine triggered by the conflict) without having any significant bearing on U.S. national security.
New U.K. porn rules to launch this summer. The British block on visiting porn sites unless you prove your age will take effect starting this upcoming July 15, after an initially planned rollout for last April was pushed back. See past Reason writing on this misguided censorship and privacy invasion here, here, and here.
— Myles Jackman Obscenity Lawyer (@MylesJackman) April 17, 2019
Are socialists more like libertarians than they'd like to admit? https://t.co/BUNq3cGkAT
— reason (@reason) April 16, 2019
- ICYMI yesterday, check out my dispatch from a New York City socialism conference.
- Oh my: Scientists are about to vote on whether a new geological epoch started in 1950. This Atlantic piece provides a fascinating look at the scientists arguing for and against this proposition, and why.
- Republican Rep. Devin Nunes (Calif.) is using the civil court system as a fundraising tool.
- Ron Bailey explores "the craft brewed cannabis goldrush."
- This seems like a positive development:
Houston pilot program will let victims track their rape kits electronically https://t.co/JkXy2nEStn
— Avens O'Brien (@avensobrien) April 17, 2019
- In addition to paying out nearly $20 million for ratting out customers to immigration agents, Motel 6 said "it would never allow its franchisees and operators to deputize themselves as Lil' ICE Helpers, and would tell them to keep their guest lists to themselves," as Techdirt puts it. Read the consent degree the hotel agreed to here.
- A Florida massage-parlor sting update:
THIS RIGHT HERE: "…Many of the women busted in the massage parlor investigation are still in jail, which affects their long-term employment prospects. How many problems have we created for them because they engaged in consensual sex work?" https://t.co/EjZ1Uw35lt
— Mistress Matisse (@mistressmatisse) April 17, 2019
- A good critique of left/right as they apply to the current political moment, too:
— Claire Lehmann (@clairlemon) April 17, 2019
- In which Shoshana Weissman attempts to disabuse folks of overly Pollyanna-ish ideas about the federal school lunch program.
???? government programs ????
???? that you think you like ????
???? have horrible origins ???? https://t.co/FUAVfHOrY9
— Shoshana Weissmann, Sloth Committee Chair (@senatorshoshana) April 17, 2019
- Reason's Jacob Sullum tackles the Julian Assange case:
On its face, the federal indictment of Assange, which was drawn up in March 2018 and unsealed last Thursday, charges him with a crime akin to burglary: conspiracy to commit computer intrusion. According to the Justice Department, Assange helped former U.S. Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning gain unauthorized access to classified files on Defense Department computers. Except that is not really what happened, since Manning already had access to those files.